Your dream and aspiration is to be a successful copywriter with a thriving business. You aim to have lots of clients on your books. You meet somebody whom you think you may get potential work from, let’s call him Bob!
You meet him at one of those networking breakfasts, forever hopeful. You get along really well, you spend some time talking about work and then move on to more personal things finding that you commonality is the love of Labradors.
As this happens, the Blackberry in Bob’s memory pulls out a crisp new index card and starts making notes (this is a metaphorical Blackberry, not an actual tiny device living in Bob’s brain).
The “Blackberry” takes down your name and a few salient details: you’re tallish, brown hair, married, love to hike, have lots of CD’s, DVD’s and a really good sense of humour.
When you leave, Bob’s Blackberry decides where this card should be filed in Bob’s memory. Whether that card ends up in the right place (which means more business for you) or the wrong place (business disaster) is up to you.
Here’s what makes the difference:
1. Are you a general contact or a specialist?
Bob has no clear idea of what you really do, so you get filed under General Contacts. This is a large box that includes the index cards of everyone from the girl he first dated to the florist he used when he broke up with his fifth girlfriend. You will never, ever be remembered if you get filed in there.
2. Lack of clarity
Bob remembers you’re a copywriter, and so his filing clerk pops your card in the Copywriter box. This box contains almost a hundred cards. Now you are just another arbitrary one!
Almost every time Bob accesses this information, he goes to the same half-dozen names he’s already familiar with. He’s not likely to ever think of you when he needs to hire a copywriter.
Bob remembers your copywriting specialty, and his filing clerk puts your card in a much smaller box. (In fact, he might have to create a new box just to file your card in). When he thinks about your career, your name might be the only one that he thinks of. Now you have a good chance of being remembered when he accesses the Copywriter box, too.
It’s time to get specific about what you do
Many professionals (not just writers, but also designers, life coaches, consultants) are afraid to specialise too much when it comes to their marketing, for fear that they’ll limit themselves.
But that’s exactly what you need! If you represent yourself in the most general terms (“I’m a copywriter,”) then you get filed with everyone else who has done the same thing and that is a lot of people. Find your niche and market yourself in a way that makes you a dynamic memory easy to access and build your business.